Legal marijuana could reduce crime

March 23, 2013

Sen. Robert Zirkin's bill decriminalizing possession of small amounts of cannabis is a small step in the right direction for justice, but it will do little good for reducing gun crime in Maryland ("Advocates for legal marijuana take first steps," March 20). Only legalization can do that.

The United States' nearly $150 billion-a-year black market drug economy creates such a huge demand for illegal guns that it is a subsidy for the cheap proliferation of firearms to all would-be criminals seeking to escalate their criminality with cop killing deadly force.

Marijuana, as an illegal drug, is estimated to be worth more than 60 percent of the U.S. drug black market. A demand requiring an endless supply of guns. If legal, that marijuana demand would be under the regulated control of responsible adult supervision for the first time in American history. Responsible adult supervision that would not require guns and gangs to enforce its market control.

Pat Rogers, Allentown, Pa.

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